Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of the New Parliament Building of India on Thursday. The new building is an intrinsic part of the vision of ‘AtmaNirbhar Bharat’ and will be a landmark opportunity to build a peoples’ Parliament for the first time after independence; one which will match the needs and aspirations of a ‘New India’ in the 75th anniversary of her independence in 2022.
The function was attended by Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Raj Nath Singh, other senior Ministers, MPs, and invited guests. An all religion prayer ceremony was held on the occasion.
Speaking on the occasion, the Prime Minister said, it is a milestone in India’s democratic history, filled with the idea of ‘Indianness’. He added that the start of the construction of new Parliament House of India is one of the most important stages of our democratic traditions. He gave a call to the people of India, to build this new building of the Parliament together. He said it can’t be more beautiful or more pure than the new building of our Parliament witnessing when India celebrates 75 years of its independence.
Prime Minister Modi recalled the moment when he entered the Parliament House for the first time in 2014 as an MP. He said that when he entered the Parliament House for the first time, he bowed his head and saluted this temple of democracy, before stepping into it. He remarked that many new things are being done in the new Parliament House that will increase the efficiency of the MPs and modernize their work culture. He said if the old Parliament House gave direction to post-independence India, the new building would become a witness to the making of a ‘AatmaNirbhar Bharat.’ If work was done to fulfil the needs of the country in the old Parliament House, then the aspirations of 21st century India will be fulfilled in the new building.
Mr. Modi remarked that democracy elsewhere is about election procedures, governance and administration. But democracy in India is about life values, it is the way of life and the soul of a nation. He added India’s democracy is a system developed through centuries of experience. There is also a life mantra, an element of life as well as a system of order in the democracy in India. He said it is India’s democratic strength that is giving new energy to the development of the country and giving new faith to its countrymen. He said democracy in India is constantly being renewed every year and it is seen that voter turnout is increasing with every election.
Prime Minister said, democracy in India has always been a means of resolving differences along with governance. Different views, different perspectives empower a vibrant democracy. He said our democracy has moved forward with the goal that there is always room for differences so long as it is not entirely disconnected from the process. He stressed that policies and politics may vary but we are for the service of the public and there should be no differences in this ultimate goal. He added whether debates occur within the Parliament or outside, the determination towards national service and dedication towards national interest should be reflected in them constantly.
The Prime Minister urged the people to remember their responsibility to awaken the optimism towards democracy which is the basis of the existence of the Parliament House. He reminded that every member who enters Parliament is accountable towards the public as well as the Constitution. He said there are no rituals as such to consecrate this temple of democracy. It is the representatives of the people who come to this temple that will consecrate it. He said their dedication, their service, conduct, thought and behaviour will become the life of this temple.
The Prime Minister urged the people to take the pledge to keep ‘India Fir’, to worship only the progress of India and the development of India, every decision should increase the strength of the country. He said the nation’s interest is paramount. He asked everyone to take the pledge that there will be no greater interest for them than national interest. Their concern for the country will be more than their own personal concerns. Nothing will be more important than the unity, integrity of the country. Dignity and fulfilment of the Constitution of the country are the biggest goals of our life.
Script: Padam Singh, AIR: News Analyst